In the post-meltdown world, it is irresponsible, ineffective, and ultimately useless to have a serious economic debate without considering and challenging the role of the Federal Reserve. Most people think of the Fed as an indispensable institution without which the country's economy could not properly function. But in End the Fed, Ron Paul draws on American history, economics, and fascinating stories from his own long political life to argue that the Fed is both corrupt and unconstitutional. It is inflating currency today at nearly a Weimar or Zimbabwe level, a practice that threatens to put us into an inflationary depression where $100 bills are worthless. What most people don't realize is that the Fed -- created by the Morgans and Rockefellers at a private club off the coast of Georgia -- is actually working against their own personal interests. Congressman Paul's urgent appeal to all citizens and officials tells us where we went wrong and what we need to do fix America's economic policy for future generations.
One hundred years after its foundation, the Federal Reserve has been entrusted with an enormous expansion in its operating powers for the sake of reviving a sluggish economy during the financial crisis. The aim of the present volume is to present a thorough and fundamental analysis of the Fed in the recent past, as well as over the entire course of its history. In evaluating the origin, structure and performance of the Fed, the contributors to this volume critically apply the principles of Austrian monetary and business-cycle theory. It is argued that the Fed has done harm to the U.S. and increasingly, the global economy by committing two types of errors: theoretical errors stemming from an incorrect understanding of the optimal monetary system, and historical errors, found in episodes in which the Fed instigated an economic downturn or hindered a budding recovery. The book contains not only a critical analysis of the activities of the Fed over its history, but also a road map with directions for the future.
The Federal Reserve is one of the most disliked entities in the United States at present, right alongside the IRS. Americans despise the Fed, but they’re also generally a bit confused as to why they distrust our central bank. Their animus is reasonable, though, because the Fed’s most famous function—targeting the Fed funds rate—is totally backwards. John Tamny explains this backwardness in terms of a Taylor Swift concert followed by a ride home with Uber. In modern times, he points out, the notion of credit has been perverted, so that most people believe it’s money and that the supply of it can therefore be increased. This false notion has aggrandized the Fed with power that it can’t possibly use wisely. The contrast between the grinding poverty of Baltimore and the abundance of Silicon Valley helps illustrate the problem, along with stories about Donald Trump, Robert Downey Jr., Jim Harbaugh (the Michigan football coach), and robots. Who Needs the Fed? makes a sober case against the Federal Reserve by explaining what credit really is, and why the Fed’s existence is inimical to its creation. Readers will come away entertained, much more knowledgeable, and prepared to argue that the Fed is merely superfluous on its best days but perilous on its worst.
The Federal Reserve—the central bank of the United States—is the most powerful peacetime bureaucracy in the federal government. Under the chairmanship of Alan Greenspan (1987-2006), the Fed achieved near mythical status for its part in managing the economy, and Greenspan was lauded as a genius. Few seemed to notice or care that Fed officials operated secretly with almost no public accountability. There was a courageous exception to this lack of oversight, however: Henry B. Gonzalez (D-TX)—chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives Financial Services (banking) Committee. In Deception and Abuse at the Fed, Robert Auerbach, a former banking committee investigator, recounts major instances of Fed mismanagement and abuse of power that were exposed by Rep. Gonzalez, including: Blocking Congress and the public from holding powerful Fed officials accountable by falsely declaring—for 17 years—it had no transcripts of its meetings; Manipulating the stock and bond markets in 1994 under cover of a preemptive strike against inflation; Allowing $5.5 billion to be sent to Saddam Hussein from a small Atlanta branch of a foreign bank—the result of faulty bank examination practices by the Fed; Stonewalling Congressional investigations and misleading the Washington Post about the $6,300 found on the Watergate burglars. Auerbach provides documentation of these and other abuses at the Fed, which confirms Rep. Gonzalez's belief that no government agency should be allowed to operate with the secrecy and independence in which the Federal Reserve has shrouded itself. Auerbach concludes with recommendations for specific, broad-ranging reforms that will make the Fed accountable to the government and the people of the United States.
Traces the six-decade struggle for power within the Federal Reserve System from the perspective of the central bankers who shaped the Fed. Imagining the Fed traces a six-decade struggle to shape the Federal Reserve's policymaking organs, the Washington-based Board and the Federal Open Market Committee. Conventional wisdom holds that Congress ended the system's struggle in 1935 by granting the Board a voting majority on the open market committee, establishing its Fed primacy. Yet, this book shows that the Fed's struggle continued flaring to yield consequential changes until 1970, when the modern Fed emerged. Nicolas Thompson explores how the Fed's evolution from a weak and fragmented sprawl into the world's most powerful central bank paralleled broader changes in the American polity. The rise and fall of hegemonic political parties remade the Board and elevated its Fed position, while the wars of the twentieth century concentrated Fed power in New York. When peace returned, however, system agents inherited a central bank that veered from the law, inviting renewed struggle. This process continued into the 1960s, when an ascendant Democratic Party loaded the Board with economists, who remade it in their image. Later partisan choices to launch unfunded wars at home and abroad unleashed inflationary forces which severed the dollar's link to gold. Freed from its golden fetters, monetary policy emerged as a domestic policy realm and Fed power durably concentrated in a new Board technocracy. Nicolas Thompson is Assistant Professor of Politics at the University of South Florida.
In 1913the United States was one of the last major economies to establish a central bank. This book examines the history and evolution of central banking in the United States from the perspective of central banking functions such as aggregator of private lending to the federal government and the fiscal agent for the government.
Expert contributors examine the recent actions of the Federal Reserve and suggest directions for the Fed going forward by drawing on past political, historical, and market principles. They explain how the Fed arrived at its current position, offer ideas on how to exit the situation, and propose new market-based reforms that can help keep the Fed on the road to good monetary policy in the future.
In this narrative history, David E. Lindsey gives the reader a ringside seat to a century of policies at the US Federal Reserve. Alternating between broad historical strokes and deep dives into the significance of monetary issues and developments, Lindsey offers a fascinating look into monetary policymaking from the Fed's inception in 1913 to today. Lindsey's three decades of service on the Federal Reserve Board staff allow him to combine the heft of scholarship with an insider's perspective on how the recent chairmen's and current chairwoman's personalities and singular visions have shaped policy choices with far-reaching consequences. He critiques the performances of Chairman Ben Bernanke and Vice Chair Janet Yellen during the prelude, outbreak, and aftermath of the financial crisis of 2008, situating them in the context of the Fed's century-long history. He also quantitatively explores an alternative to the conventional New-Keynesian theory of inflation, replacing so-called "rational expectations" with the Fed's inflation objective. This unique volume is a piece of living history that has much to offer economists and monetary policy and finance professionals.
This is the first biography of William McChesney Martin, Jr. (1906-1998), the first paid president of the New York Stock Exchange and the chairman of the Federal Reserve System under Presidents Truman to Nixon. The extent of Martin’s influence on the course of American economic history was significant: arguably he has done more to strengthen and reform the nation’s most important financial institutions than has any other individual. Chairman of the Fed tells Martin’s fascinating life story and explains his lasting impact on the NYSE and the Fed, both troubled institutions that Martin transformed. The book provides an inside look into the economic deliberations of five presidential administrations and describes Martin’s battles to bring about ethical and intelligent regulation of U.S. financial markets. His experiences shed light not only on the evolution of the American financial system but also on critical issues that confront the system today.